*Blog postings do not necessarily reflect the views of Fantini Research

By Steve Norton
CEO, Norton Management

There are many US states that are looking at various ways to introduce sports betting to their citizens, and many are considering online gaming bills that might also offer hundreds of in-game and proposition bets available on a single sporting event. 

Nevada's experience with sports betting, shows that only about 2% of gaming revenues are from sports wagers and on each $100 bet, the federal government gets 50 cents, the casino earns about $5, and the state 34 cents, leaving the casino just over $4 to cover payroll, marketing, other variable costs, and hopefully end with a profit. But in reality, I think you will find that most Nevada operators like sports betting, because it brings customers into the property where sales and taxes are realized from restaurants, night clubs, accommodations, entertainment, meetings, and yes, even the slots and table games.

By Steve Norton
CEO, Norton Management

I admire Carl Icahn and his involvement in Atlantic City and Las Vegas casino gaming. He thinks like the investor he is. He saved Tropicana and would have saved the Taj Mahal if the Union was more interested in its membership's jobs instead of trying to look powerful in asking for unreasonable contractual terms. They rolled the dice with the wrong billionaire.

Atlantic City and New Jersey have made some unfortunate mistakes after our monopoly was compromised by the Pennsylvania slot casino in 2006. Not only did we lose Eastern PA and Philadelphia as major markets, these slot and later full casinos, were closer to North and Central New Jersey residents, then Atlantic City.

By Steve Norton
CEO, Norton Management

Baton Rouge Casino Revenue Drops 19% in February

My comment:

Louisiana needs to consider moving some of their licenses. Even without the smoking ban, Baton Rough should not have had even two licenses. When I worked with the legislature in 1991-92, I had proposed only 10 riverboats, which would have given 3 to Greater New Orleans, and allowed 5 or 6 on the Texas border, and one in Baton Rouge. Catfish Town could have been a wonderful location if a riverboat was not required. Now you have poorly performing riverboat casinos in Baton Rouge and Shreveport Bossier City.

Caesars stock rose 6.21 percent to $8.89 after the New York Post reported Tilman Fertitta could make another run at CZR with the help of the company’s new largest shareholder, Carl Icahn.

Fertitta’s proposed reverse merger with his Golden Nugget was rejected by CZR in November as it would have saddled the company with too much debt and didn’t create shareholder value, CZR said.

Fertitta still doesn’t have a cash partner but would need to buy significantly less of CZR now as Icahn has increased his stake to 28.5 percent, the Post reported.

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